The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC) has handed over the 53km-long Mussafah Channel project to the Abu Dhabi Ports Company for operational use, following completion.

The channel was built at a cost of AED1.5bn ($408m) and is located just off the south-western shoreline of Hudayriat Island in the UAE.

The Mussafah navigation channel will enable access to larger commercial vessels and provide a safe navigation access channel with increased air draft to service the Mussafah Industrial Zone and future ICAD areas.

The project has replaced the existing access channel to the Mussafah Industrial Area and only smaller vessels will use the old channel.

The new channel dimensions allow for two-way vessel traffic of large Panamax-type bulk carriers, according to the Khaleej Times.